- The Dodgers rank 22nd among organizations in minor-league propsects, according to Keith Law of ESPN.com.
- Tom Hawthorn of the Toronto Globe & Mail writes about Allan Simpson and the story of how Baseball America was founded.
- True Blue L.A. offers a guide to visiting Camelback Ranch.
- Teenage Angels outfielder Mike Trout was named the top minor-league prospect in baseball by MLB.com.
- John Sickels looks back at the top 50 hitting prospects of 2006 at Minor League Ball. Shed a tear for Joel Guzman.
- Pitcher and used-car salesman Brandon Webb will take that old clunker off your hands, he tells the Dallas Morning News (link via Baseball Musings).
- Webb’s former Arizona teammate, Micah Owings, has returned to the Diamondbacks, who might use him as a true two-way player, according to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic.
- Rob Neyer of ESPN.com questions whether, after decades, he is still a Royals fan.
From the excellent HBO sports documentary “Lombardi”, here’s Vince Lombardi’s most famous quote in his own words — and his misgivings about it:
“Winning isn’t everything, but it’s the only thing. There is no second place. Either you’re first, or you’re last.”
[Interview: Jerry Izenberg, Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger]
He told me one day, “I wish to hell I’d never said that.” I said, “Well, don’t you believe it?” He said, “What I believe is, if you go out on a football field Sunday, or any other endeavor in life, and you leave every fiber of what you have on that field, when the game finally ends, then you’ve won, and to me that tells a lot more than the final score. And I never made that clear.”
* * *
- At the end of the 2010 season, after all midseason spending was factored in, the Dodgers had the No. 9 payroll in the majors, according to Maury Brown at Fangraphs. The Dodgers spent $109.8 million. That was good for fourth in the National League, though the Dodgers finished with a better record than two of the three teams that spent more money: Philadelphia ($145.5 million), Chicago ($142.4 million) and New York ($127.6 million). San Francisco was 11th in the majors and fifth in the NL at $101.4 million. Texas reached the World Series with a $74.3 million payroll. The Dodgers’ end-of-year payroll in 2010 was 17 percent below their end-of-2009 payroll, according to Brown.
- Takashi Saito signed a one-year contract with Milwaukee. Adam McCalvy of MLB.com reports the value at $2 million plus incentives.
- A chart of Baseball America’s Top 100 prospect lists from 1990 to 2010 has been posted at Beyond the Box Score by Jeff Zimmerman.
- The Dodgers will once again have their developmental minicamp for prospects at Dodger Stadium shortly after the New Year. Ken Gurnick of MLB.com has details.
- Gurnick also has an article on newlyweds Clayton and Ellen Kershaw taking a goodwill trip to Africa in January. Ellen has been to Africa four previous times. As far as offseason workouts, Gurnick writes that Kershaw has been throwing for a month.
- Don “Full Pack” Stanhouse has had a quite successful post-baseball career in business, writes Benjamin Pomerance in a long feature at Baseball Savvy.
- Here’s more information about bunting in 2010 than you could ever dream of — featuring mentions of Clayton Kershaw and the possibility that Juan Pierre might be the majors’ most harmful bunter — from Lucas Apostoleris at Beyond the Box Score.